Are Nuts Good for Losing Weight?

Many people including experts, for years, have avoided nuts because of their high-fat content. What they didn’t know is that nuts are healthy and incorporating them in your diet can help with weight loss and reduce risks of heart attack. Epidemiological studies show that eating one ounce of nuts every day reduces the risk of heart attack by 30%. Nuts are rich in healthy fats, high fiber, and phytochemicals which are very essential if you consume the right amount.

It’s proven that, although nuts are high in fat, it’s not just any other fat, but the unsaturated heart-healthy fats. Additionally, nuts are a source of vitamin E, folic acid, magnesium, copper, iron, zinc, and antioxidants. The most commonly consumed nuts include cashews, almonds, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, pine nuts, pistachios, and walnuts. Nuts also lower bad cholesterol and raise good cholesterol levels.

Below are the reasons why nuts are very good for losing weight.

Nuts Keep You Full for Long

They reduce hunger and give you a satiating effect meaning you are able to adhere to calorie-free diets. Since you feel full for longer, chances are, you’re going to eat fewer calories thus you are able to lose weight. Also, the satiated effect is attributed to their fiber content which lowers cholesterol levels too.

However, you should not eat more than a half cup of nuts per day. To make weight loss more effective, if possible avoid calories from other sources since nuts alone can give enough calories.

Boosts Metabolism

As a result of the high unsaturated fats and protein concentration, consuming nuts may help exert a thermogenic effect. This thermogenic effect helps in melting down fats in our bodies. A study showed that consumption of peanuts for 19 weeks can increase the number of calories you burn by 11 percent.

The thermogenic effect stimulates metabolism which also increases body temperature in a good way. In a trial to show how walnuts boost thermogenesis, it showed that that the nuts did boost thermogenic effect ten times higher than saturated fats from dairy.

Low Glycemic

All nuts have a low glycemic load, meaning they cause a gradual rise in blood sugar instead of a sudden increase. Low glycemic foods help to keep blood sugar stable. Research conducted on overweight people showed that those who consumed nuts which have a low glycemic load, their body mass index decreased. This was a clear indication that nuts contribute greatly to weight loss.

Additionally, nuts lower oxidative stress, blood pressure, and other health issues in people with diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome is characterized by a cluster of conditions which include excess body fat, high blood sugar, increased blood pressure, abnormal cholesterol or triglyceride levels.

However, having one of these conditions doesn’t mean you have metabolic syndrome. Nuts are very essential, specifically in people with type 2 diabetes specifically.

Nuts Reduce Inflammation

Eating nuts reduce inflammation and promote healthy aging. They contain anti-inflammatory properties – a way of defending your body against harmful bacteria and pathogens. Nuts that have proven to fight inflammation include pistachios, Brazil nuts, almonds, and walnuts.

According to studies, participates who supplemented their diet with nuts decreased their chances of developing serious illnesses such as kidney conditions by 35%. This was higher compared to the group of people who never consumed before.

Bottom Line

Yes, nuts are very beneficial in weight loss as they help burn body fat faster. Incorporating nuts into your diet is not associated with weight gain. However, you should consume them in small portions. The Public Health Guideline recommends eating one ounce (28g) per day for a healthy life. Other nutritional benefits of nuts include:

  • Nuts reduce the risk of gallstone which can be a serious condition if no precautions are taken.
  • They reduce age-related macular degeneration (can lead to blindness).
  • Nuts help maintain bone health.
  • They can also slow brain aging.
  • Nuts contain arginine which is converted to nitric oxide and helps in reducing the risk of atherosclerosis (hardening of arteries).

Nuts can be enjoyed whole, chopped and sprinkled on food or as butter. You can make your own homemade butter from whichever combination of nuts you want. Nuts are available in a wide variety including salted or unsalted, seasoned or plain, raw or roasted.

You should store them at room temperature. However, if you are storing them for long you can use a refrigerator to keep them fresh. The best way to incorporate nuts into your diet is by using them as snacks in between meals.

All images via Pixabay


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